Your guide to stand-up comedy in Dubai
Dubai, which has long been a hub of diverse international entertainment, can now stake its claim as the comedy capital of Arabia. Not only do we have fantastic comedy venues drawing the biggest names in the biz, but our own local comic scene is also thriving, with new and exciting acts emerging all the time. Here’s everything you need to know about the local comedy scene.
Comedy Collectives in Dubai
The Laughter Factory
Some of the biggest international comedians in the world have been brought to Dubai to perform at The Laughter Factory’s shows over the years. Lee Mack, Adam Hills, Kevin Bridges, Frankie Boyle, Ross Noble and Dara Ó Briain are just a few of the big-name comics who’ve entertained Dubai audiences courtesy of The Laughter Factory.
The pioneers of local comedy in the UAE, Dubomedy has been bringing laughs to our corner of the desert for the past seven years. Not only does the organisation arrange for various international and local acts to perform in Dubai, but it also holds its own classes in everything from stand-up to sketches and improvisation, so there’s always room for budding amateurs to join the party.
Comedians in Dubai
Dubai-based Indian comic Nitin Mirani has become a stalwart of the emirate’s comedy scene, and can often be found playing the local circuit. Last year, Mirani made it to the final ten in Laugh Factory’s Funniest Person in the World competition.
Ali Al Sayed
Known locally as Dubai’s King of Laughter, Ali Al Sayed is one of the forefathers of the comedy scene in Dubai, having performed at the very first weekly comedy night in the UAE back in 2008. He is also the founder of Dubomedy, along with his wife, fellow comedian Mina Liccione.
Omar Ramzi - “The White Sudani”
Born and raised in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, to an Irish mother and Sudanese father, Ramzi draws from his unique upbringing to present a self-deprecating form of comedy packed with varied cultural references taken from his hometown and the respective heritage of both of his parents.
Affectionately nicknamed “The White Sudani” (‘Sudani’ is the Arabic word for Sudanese), Ramzi has carved a career playing in venues throughout Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the UAE since he made his stand-up debut in 2009.
Born to South Korean and Vietnamese parents, raised in Jordan and now based in Dubai, Wonho Chung is a firm favourite on the regional comedy circuit. Traditionally, Chung performs his routines in Arabic, though he does perform for English-speaking audiences as well, most recently with a headline show at Ductac in October last year.
Stand-up comedy venues in Dubai
Dubai World Trade Centre
As one of the largest live venues in the emirate, Dubai World Trade Centre tends to attract the really big names. Famous British comic Al Murray (pictured below) is heading there on October 2 this year with his One Man, One Guvnor live comedy show in Dubai.
Sheikh Zayed Rd
+971 4 332 1000
This lively, welcoming spot at The Bonnington Hotel hosts regular comedy nights. Head here for classic Irish hospitality and top-class comedy.
Bonnington Hotel, Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Cluster J
+971 4 356 0000
The 543-seat-capacity venue at DUCTAC (Dubai Community Theatre & Arts Centre) is often used for live comedy shows, with its most recent gig being American-Iranian funnyman Max Amini.
DUCTAC, Mall of the Emirates
+971 4 341 4777